Bookmark Website  | Free Registration  | The Team
The Lounge  | Champions  | The Wire |  Schedule |  Audio  |  Arcade  |  The Top Ten  |  Historical  |  Email  |  Video

Multivitamins: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly


Ideally, humans would eat wholly nutritious diets rich in protein, vitamins and minerals. The fact is, most people do not meet all their nutritional needs through their food. As a result, many of us rely on multivitamins and supplements to achieve more complete nutrition.

Question: Do you know what those vitamins and minerals are doing in your body? Do you know how much of the product your body actually absorbs when it comes to taking a multivitamin

No federal regulations

Vitamins, minerals and nutritional supplements produced and distributed in the U.S. are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. In fact, if you or I wanted to start selling our own personal brands of vitamins, mineral supplements or similar products, we could do so without anyone, including the FDA, having a say in the matter.

This lack of regulation should sound a warning signal about these products' contents. Most supplements on the market are basically garbage. While they may contain good-for-you ingredients, they do nothing to bolster your nutrition because your body cannot absorb them.

Nutritional companies spend thousands of dollars marketing their products to convince consumers how great they are. For example, the best-known multivitamin brands found in drug and discount stores are virtually useless. Rather than trying to dazzle you with their exaggerated claims, supplement companies would be better off spending their dollars on research to determine that their products really are benefiting you. The quality of a supplement's contents is far more important than any sexy claims its manufacturer can make. Your main concerns should be the quality and bioavailability (level of absorption and use by the body) of any product you purchase.

Supplements cannot repair the effects of bad eating

Hippocrates said it best, "Let food be thy medicine and let thy medicine be thy food."

Eating naturally nutritious food is the most important aspect of your diet. The foundation you lay with proper eating habits is far more important than any food supplement you can take. Examine your eating and exercise habits before you consider seeing a doctor for almost any problem.

However, even the best vitamins and supplements available will not propel you to optimal health if you otherwise eat unhealthy food. Say your diet consists mainly of pre-packaged and/or fast foods, but you take your Centrum or One-a-Day, so you talk yourself into thinking you feel fine. Your body knows otherwise, and you may find yourself in big trouble in a few years. All this amounts to is killing yourself slowly.

Why take supplements at all?

Even the most healthful eater might want to consider supplements, due to the lack of nutrients in our soil. Soil in the U.S. slowly has been losing more and more nutrients each year, making our foods less tasty and less nourishing to our bodies.

The single most important health factor is nourishment. If we lack proper nourishment, we will slowly die of disease, obesity and malnutrition. Yes, extremely overweight people are largely malnourished! The way to achieve optimal health is to eat as few calories as possible, while still providing your body with the highest levels of nourishment.

This is where organic food plays a key role. Organic food has been shown to contain 40 percent more nutrients than regular commercially produced food. Add high quality supplements which provide your body with bioavailable vitamins and minerals, and it becomes easy to live a long, healthy life while consuming fewer calories and still obtaining the nutrients you need to function optimally.

What to look for in a supplement

Almost everyone should start off with a multivitamin supplement. Multivitamins work better than taking individual supplements because they provide the body with a combination of all the vitamins a minerals it needs in a single source. The body prefers this delivery method because it can better absorb and utilize them in combination than it can when you take each vitamin and mineral separately.

Other beneficial supplements include antioxidants found in trace minerals, and some specific vitamins and minerals not contained in most multivitamins. Antioxidants contain nutrients to help fight off the oxidative properties in free radicals that cause your body to break down. Taking an antioxidant supplement will keep your body strong and healthy, allowing less breakdown.

Still other important supplements are cod liver oil, fish oil, flax seed oil, and whey or egg protein (sometimes used as a form of meal replacement).

Each individual requires different nutrients and a generic multivitamin certainly can help address these deficiencies. Remember, though, any supplement is still a synthetic and not real food. Experiment until you find a high-quality product that works for you. There are dozens of good products out there, but none is "the best." Because we're all unique, no single product can be all things to all people. Specialty vitamin companies do develop personalized products. By performing blood, hair, and saliva work, they determine the necessary ingredients to create the best multivitamin for an individual. As you can imagine, that level of individualized production comes with a hefty price tag.

High-quality general-use supplements are out there. They can be found at the health food store and almost certainly will cost more than the famous name brands. But if you don't invest in your health first, every other investment in your life will be wasted. Isn't optimal health worth the cost and effort it takes to purchase quality products?

It might sound cliché, but it's true: You take care of your body, and your body will take care of you.

Scott White is a certified personal trainer and nutritionist located in Scottsdale, Ariz. For more information about nutrition and fitness, reach Scott at 480-628-1607 or swhite@personalpowertraining.net. Also: http://www.personalpowertraining.net.


MORE RESOURCES:

Science Times

Omega-3 Supplements Have No Benefit For Cognitive Decline -- Study
Science Times
Anchovy are source for Omega-3 supplements (Photo : Reuters/Enrique Castro-Mendivil) A fishing boat is seen after fishing anchovy at Peru's northern port of Chimbote. Peru is the world's top fish exporter. Last year it shipped abroad more than $2 ...
Well | Supplements Don't Fight Cognitive Decline, NIH Study SaysNew York Times (blog)
Omega-3 Supplements Ineffective In Preventing Neurodegeneration, Study SaysPioneer News
Clinical Trial Shows Fish Oil Supplements Have No Effect on Brain FunctionClapway
Latinos Health -Times Gazette -NYC Today
all 109 news articles »


Another Voice: Be skeptical of astounding claims for supplements
Buffalo News
The seller, Quincy Bioscience, tells us that Prevagen supplements a protein that diminishes with the aging process to provide healthier brain function, a sharper mind and clearer thinking. Should doubts persist, we are told that Prevagen has been ...



Bloomington Pantagraph

Easy does it on Vitamin D supplements for obese teens
Bloomington Pantagraph
"After three months of having vitamin D boosted into the normal range with supplements, these teenagers showed no changes in body weight, body mass index, waistline, blood pressure or blood flow," says Kumar. "We're not saying the links between vitamin ...



Irish Medical Times

Supplements, Exercise Fail to Improve Cognitive Function
Medscape
A physical activity program and nutrient supplementation interventions failed to improve cognitive function and lower the risk for mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or dementia, according to two new studies. In one trial, led by Kaycee M. Sink, MD, from ...
No cognitive improvements from exercise or supplementsIrish Medical Times

all 2 news articles »


Male eating disorder? New report on workout supplements
Military Times
Theodore recently co-wrote a paper with psychologist Richard Achiro to study whether the use of dietary supplements such as protein powders, creatine and other performance- and muscle-enhancing boosters contribute to unhealthy eating habits — and ...



Care2.com

This Supplement May Save Seniors from Falls
Care2.com
Furthermore, those individuals who received the supplements reported a lower rate of falls than their counterparts who only received a placebo. Additional investigation is needed to validate the vitamin D intervention's reduction in falls, but this ...



The Hill (blog)

FDA cracks down on dietary supplements
The Hill (blog)
In April this year, the FDA expanded its policy of restricting the sale of adulterated dietary supplements containing untested additives. Many of the substances targeted are dangerous and worthy of restriction. The synthetic additive DMAA is one such ...



The Inquisitr

FDA Powdered Caffeine Warning About Supplements After Deaths: How Much Coffee ...
The Inquisitr
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) wants consumers to beware of pure powdered caffeine. Usually sold in supplements, caffeine powder overdoses have killed two people. As a result, five distributors have received the FDA's letters about their ...
Pure Powdered Caffeine a Serious Health Risk: FDAWebMD
What Happens to Your Body After Taking Pure Powdered CaffeineYahoo Health

all 262 news articles »


Duluth News Tribune

Multivitamins and supplements: To take or not to take?
Duluth News Tribune
For some people, however, taking certain supplements may be the best way to get nutrients they may be lacking through diet. So, Harguth cautions, it's important to understand the exact impact supplements will have on your body before getting out your ...
Lowdown on taking vitamins, supplementsWatertownDailyTimes.com

all 2 news articles »


Newsmax

ISU researcher examines how supplements, resistance training improve muscle ...
News-Medical.net
Rick Sharp, a professor of kinesiology, is testing the effectiveness of a combination of supplements and resistance training in older adults with low vitamin D levels. The trial is designed to build on previous studies, which show that the supplement ...
Supplement Boosts Muscle Strength in Seniors: StudyNewsmax

all 6 news articles »

Google News


Advertisement



Section Site Map - Submit News - Feedback - Comments - Advertise with Us

Copyright © 2006 Luminati Inc. All rights reserved.